Julie's Quest

Hello, and welcome to my blog. My blog is about the trials and tribulations of writing, where we celebrate successes and commiserate our near misses. We tell it like it is here and will do our very best to help you on the road to being published and pick you up after the rejections (they will come!) Whether you are a professional or amateur writer you will find something useful here.

I hope you enjoy reading my posts and will visit again soon.

Happy Writing

Julie Phillips - freelance writer - member of the Association of Freelance Writers - member of the Society of Authors

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Another nice surprise!

I sent in three linked poems to The New Writer last month and these were declined (that's my new word for rejected! It doesn't sound as bad does it?) But I recieved an email from First Edition and they are going to publish a poem I sent them in the next issue. The poem is entitled water so look out for it, if you read poetry and get that particular magazine. I am particularly excited about it as, apart from my poems on the online site Poetry Street, it's the first poem I've had published on paper.

The poem was one that I originally wrote as part of the Open University Creative Writing course. I just tweaked it a bit and sent it off. There is light at the end of the tunnel! You just have to keep writing and sending stuff out.

I've had many reader letters published in news papers and magazines, articles and now a poem published this year. I have far exceeded my own expectations already. This is not bragging and blowing my own trumpet - this was never the aim of my blog. My aim is to share my writing journey with people so they can see the hard work it takes to become a published writer. It's a warts and all blog - sharing the joy and the troubles of writing, whether you want to be published or not. So my next goal is to get an article in a mainstream magazine and a short story published.

I tend to set myself small goals each month. I'll write a poem or a short story or letter and send them off and see what happens. I'm always writing something, always got something on the go, simmering away on the back burner. I find it helpful to always be working on something different at the same time, and I aim to have submissions out all the time. This way if I get a rejection - sorry, if my work is declined on this occassion - then I have several other pieces of work out there that may get accepted. As soon as a piece of my work is returned, declined, I send something else out almost immediately. I put the returned work away for a couple of weeks, then look at it again, revamp it and send it out somewhere else.

I currently have two articles, nine short stories, and one poem out there in the depths of various editor's offices. Some of them I've been waiting for a response for months! That's one thing I've learned since beginning my writing journey - you need a lot of patience!

It is incredibly frustrating and can be such a confidence bashing experience to have your work declined. But if you want to be a published author, it's part of the deal! You are allowed to sulk for a while and swear blind that you're never going to write anything else ever again, if you want to. But the only positive way to success is to dust yourself down, get back on the writing horse and carry on writing and sending stuff out there, regardless!

Having even a small reader's letter published is enough to keep me going and lift my spirits (sad, I know!) But it means that the next thing I get published might be a short story or an article. It all leads on to writing something bigger and better.

So if your work is declined, try putting it away for a bit, get on with something else and send more stuff out. Then get whatever was declined, have a good look at it, give it a make over and send it somewhere else. See what happens.

Happy Writing! Julie.


Simon Whaley said...

Sharing your successes is not 'bragging' or 'boasting'. It's blowing your own trumpet, which we all have to do because no one else is going to blow it for us! There are millions of writers out there, all beavering away trying to get published and being told by fellow writers that it can be done is uplifting.

Blow away dear!

Julie P said...


Churchmouse said...

I couldn't agree with you more, Julie, been there done that and have the tear stained tee-shirt, but isn't it lovely when there's a bit of blue sky....hugs...xx

klahanie said...

Hi Julie,
Well done on having such a positive aspect on your writing pursuits. "Declined" sounds so much better than "rejected".
Continue with your patience. Your determination, positive attitude and enthusiasm, will no doubt bring you even more recognition.
I have checked out the 'Wrekin Writers' website and I am most impressed.
Happy writing Julie. Warm wishes Gary.

Julie P said...

Thanks Churchmouse! Writing is such a struggle sometimes isn't it. But I know I'd write even if I never got anything published because I love writing. It's not the end result that's important, it's the journey. I have definately been on a huge learning curve this past year! May there be more blue sky for everyone! You have inspired me to think about talking to the school teacher at my daughter's school to see if I can go in and help the kids with their reading.

Julie P said...

Oh no, Gary! You've not been on the Wrekin Writer's website have you?! Back away slowly! I'm surpriesd it didn't put you off! No, they really are a friendly bunch and such a great support to me.

Churchmouse said...

An excellent idea, Julie. Teachers are always looking for someone caring like yourself and for someone who has the patience and enthusiasm to help children with learning to read. Hugs...